Schellas XI: FC Dallas confronting a defensive dilemma
FRISCO, Texas — In our weekly series featuring Schellas Hyndman, the FC Dallas head coach addresses 11 topics in brief including the long-term benefits of George John’s possible transfer, new defender Jack Stewart, the back four and the team's recent struggles in league play.
I-II. The popular topic of the week around FC Dallas is the possible transfer of center back George John to English Premier League side Blackburn Rovers.
“I think when you look at a player's mind and he wants to be someplace else, it’s hard to say we’re not going to make this change. If he wants to be somewhere else, then we have to support him. This is his dream.”
III. FC Dallas would receive a significant financial return from the EPL side and, in turn, likely bolster the squad.
“We’ll be able to keep these players that we have next year, and then we might even be able to add more players because there will be more financial opportunities for us to make the team even better.”
IV. The idea of losing John — a starter in 49 league games over the past two seasons — was not an easy decision for FC Dallas to grasp.
“Ownership and everyone else probably are making the right decision for the future of our club so that we can compete, but this was not an easy decision for everyone to make.”
V-VI. The next question for Hyndman and FC Dallas: Who steps up on the back line?
“We brought in Jack Stewart, who came out of Notre Dame, played — I think — a year, maybe a year-and-a-half at Real Salt Lake, [was] playing in Minnesota [Stars of NASL], but we don’t know what he can do.”
VII. Not knowing Stewart’s capabilities, the FCD coaching staff may rely on the proven players in their system.
“The other person that could step up in that position could be Zach Loyd, and then the other person is Andrew Jacobson.”
VIII. Hyndman added that Jacobson might be the best aerial player on the team. As for Loyd, he has the rest of this week to recover from a hamstring injury suffered last Saturday night.
“It’s going to be a little tough for [Loyd]. We hope he’ll be prepared for the Kansas City trip.”
IX. In the meantime, don’t expect to see Jackson at Loyd’s right back position.
“Even though Jackson is very versatile, I think we see his value as an attacking player.”
X-XI. FC Dallas will need their back line healthy, especially given the fact that they have one point from their last three league games.
“It’s got to be something that we got to address. We’ve felt like we deserved more but the reality is we only got one [point].
“We’ve had some calls go against us and I do believe the calls will even out at some point in time. The ones that go against us will probably go for us at some point in time.”
Robert Casner covers FC Dallas for MLSsoccer.com. He can be reached on Twitter: @robertmcasner